Michael Oren: US altered 40-year policy on ’67 lines without consulting Israel

In new book, former ambassador and now Knesset legislator describes his impressions from when he was Israel's envoy in Washington between 2009-2013.

June 14, 2015 00:47
1 minute read.
Michael Oren

Former ambassador to the US Michael Oren. (photo credit: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS/ANNE MANDLEBAUM)


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President Barack Obama endorsed the Palestinian position on the 1967 lines in 2011 and by so doing altered more than 40 years of American policy without prior consultation with Israel, former ambassador to the US Michael Oren writes in a book to be published later this month.

Oren, in an account of the book that appeared Friday in The New York Jewish Week, wrote that the Prime Minister’s Office was outraged at the move, and instructed him to call congressional leaders.

“Israel felt abandoned, I was to say. And that is no way to treat an ally,” he wrote.

According to the Jewish Week report, the book, titled Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israel Divide, is a first-hand account of “mistrust, mistakes and missed opportunities” that Oren saw as ambassador from 2009 to 2013, with “Obama in the role of bully in chief.”

In the book he reportedly describes how Israel was continuously blamed for lack of progress on the diplomatic front, while the Palestinians were given a free pass.

Oren described former US national security adviser Gen. James Jones as “often seemed ill-disposed toward Israel,” but liked Obama’s brash former chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel.

Regarding the Obama-Netanyahu relationship, Oren – now a Kulanu MK – wrote that they have much in common.

“Both men were left-handed, both believed in the power of oratory and that they were the smartest men in the room,” he writes. “Both were loners, adverse to decision making and susceptible to a strong woman’s advice. And both saw themselves in transformative historical roles.”

Oren, according to the report, wrote that “their similarities, perhaps as much as their differences, heightened the chance for friction.”

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